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Newly Admitted Students

Congratulations on your acceptance to the University of Pennsylvania's Master of Behavioral and Decision Sciences (MBDS) Program! We are proud to welcome you to our community of outstanding students dedicated to expanding their intellectual and professional horizons.

Orientation and course registration are supported by the College of Liberal and Professional Studies (LPS). The following checklist will guide you through the necessary steps to begin your coursework. Please be sure to follow each of the steps, in order, for your own convenience. Our staff is available to answer any questions as they arise. 

Getting Started

  1. Accept offer of admission
    To accept our offer of admission, revisit your online application and answer a few short questions. Once you have submitted your decision form, we will be able to create a student record for you in the Penn system.
  2. Review Pre-Orientation materials
    Pre-Orientation is the gateway to getting started at Penn. You will find a checklist to complete for a successful start at Penn as well as a wealth of helpful resources. Pre-Orientation documents are designed to introduce you to Penn, policies and procedures, registration and next steps.
  3. Submit all final transcripts
    You will be unable to register for courses until we have received and verified all final official transcripts. Learn more about how to submit transcripts, and about our transcript policy.
  4. Get PennKey and password set up
    You will receive your PennKey setup code via email within 3-5 business days of the receipt of your decision form. If you have not received a PennKey setup code within that time frame, you should contact If you wish to get it sooner, please allow two business days after submitting your decision form before visiting the Registrar’s office. You will need to show a photo ID.
  5. School of Arts and Sciences email address and update directory
    As a School of Arts and Sciences (SAS) student, you will create an email address based on your PennKey. For example, if your PennKey is "bfranklin," your email address will be "" This is the address that is entered for you in the Penn directory and is the address that your professors, advisors and others at Penn will use to communicate with you. You can find directions on how to get started setting up your email by visiting SAS computing.
  6. Set up an appointment with your advisor
    Having completed these administrative tasks, call (215) 898-3023 or email to set up a welcome meeting with Dr. Christopher Nave, the MBDS Managing Director.
  7. Attend new student orientation
    Visit the Orientation Information page for the dates and location of your on-campus orientation.

Program contacts

Our Associate Director can help you plan your path through the Master of Behavior and Decision Sciences degree.

Virtual Information Session

Want to know more?

Join us on Wednesday, October 27 for a virtual information session. Get your questions answered about the application, full- and part-time schedules, financial aid, and more.

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